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The Needle in the Blood by Sarah Bower

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diamondlil
Bibliomaniac

Postby diamondlil » Wed September 3rd, 2008, 9:18 am

I own it, but I haven't read it yet.
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There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.

Edith Wharton

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Eyza
Scribbler
Location: Seattle, Washington
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Postby Eyza » Thu September 4th, 2008, 6:53 pm

Vanessa:This sounds almost exactly like her "theme" in Needle in the BloodAnne G


"Vanessa" wrote:The author has written another book - Book of Love.* Anyone read that one?* I like the cover.

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diamondlil
Bibliomaniac

Postby diamondlil » Sat February 14th, 2009, 10:07 am

I swear I had already posted this, but maybe it was on the other board.

*************************


I first heard of this book when Dovegreyreader (a blogger) started raving about it earlier in 2007, and the story sounded so good to me, that I went ahead and bought it instead of waiting for it to come in to the library. Good job too, seeing as it still isn't on the catalogue yet!

Our main female character is Gytha. She was a handmaiden to the former Saxon queen. When William the Conqueror, for want of a better word conquered, Gytha was in some ways lucky to escape from the same fate of her queen who became a prisoner. In other ways Gytha was not so lucky, because she had to find some way to make a living and becomes a prostitute. Gytha is saved from this fate when the quality of her needlework is recognised and she is recruited by Odo and William's sister, a formidable woman in her own right, to join the team of embroiderers who are working on an embroidery which will tell the story of the Norman invasion of England. It is there that Gytha meets Odo, a charismatic churchman who is not, let it be said, all that chaste. The attraction between the two is intense, as is the hate that Gytha feels towards him, and she is not sure what action to take - to kill him or love him.

Odo makes Gytha his mistress, an action which in itself causes many issues for the couple, including with the all powerful king of England. As the two fall deeply in love, Odo must fight for both his political and canonical lives. The line between the church and politics has over the years has often been thin, and it is particularly thin during these early medieval days.

This is an extremely detailed book, and I would be stretching it to say that it is a book that I found myself swept away by. It took me a bit longer to read than I would have anticipated but having said that, I was immersed in the 11th century, and I was compelled to continue reading to find out what happened next. In some ways, the romantic side of this story was almost fairy tale like - a sweeping epic love story between two unlikely people. This aspect, along with much historical detail, meant that this was a book to savour and enjoy.

On the front cover the byline says 'A powerful tale of sex, lies and embroidery' and that about covers it!
My Blog - Reading Adventures



All things Historical Fiction - Historical Tapestry





There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.



Edith Wharton

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diamondlil
Bibliomaniac

Postby diamondlil » Sat February 14th, 2009, 10:08 am

"EC2" wrote:In some ways, Sarah's Bower's richly detailed use of language, and indeed some of her characterisation, reminds me a little of Dorothy Dunnett. It also has a feel of Nicole Galand's The Fool's Tale in the way it treats the medieval content, but it's ten times better.



Totally agree that this book is definitely, definitely better than The Fool's Tale.
My Blog - Reading Adventures



All things Historical Fiction - Historical Tapestry





There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.



Edith Wharton


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